B2B Social strategy Philips

Social media is the place where cat videos get shared, GIFs suffice as a full-fledged response to the question ‘Are we going out tonight?’ and where your mom posts entire travel photo albums on her feed. But social media is certainly also the place where businesses grow, potential clients and providers meet, and products find their way to the shopping cart of the consumer.

Social Strategy
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Because while we mostly know the Koninklijke Philips (Royal Philips) from it’s electric shavers and smart lighting, we’ve been working for Philips Professional Display Solutions since 2018. In short, the display manufacturer for business-to-business solutions. In this case study we’ll take a look at the issue that arose two years ago at D&L. Where at first glance, it seemed that B2B and B2C were distant from each other, we’ve observed that social media can close the gap between the problem and the solution.

About the client

Philips Professional Display Solutions is the manufacturer of various displays that offer solutions to sectors like hospitality, corporate environments (e.g. offices, but also airports, zoos, area’s surrounding football stadiums, and even stores like de Bijenkorf or Calzedonia). The market distinguishes itself by selling in large quantities. A good first impression of a new client is important to say the least.

The Assignment

The client’s wishes were clear: come up with a plan to raise Philips’ brand awareness using social media, with the ultimate goal of collecting leads for sales managers throughout Europe.

The chosen strategy

If we take a look at how Philips previously positioned itself on social media and how direct competitors position themselves, the way of communicating is the first thing that stands out. 9 Times out of 10, the content is product centered. As you’ve read before, at D&L we believe that a brand is responsible for the product and proposition, and we as an agency, for the timeline of a (potential) client. Apply that to this case, and the conclusion is that there are many more advantages to a collaboration with Philips than just the display ports of a TV. Philips’ added value for a client is more than just a TV, and that’s why we wrote a strategy together with Philips, based on the following two shifts:

1. The USPs of a product make place for the advantages of working with Philips and the network of experts that this brings;
2. Product-driven content will be replaced by solution-driven content. ‘What does the display add to the space?’

These two shifts led to a year of much more content being shared, that was also well received on the target audience’s timeline. Parties who were involved told us that Philips became visible in a fresh, new way. The fundamentals had been established, and we were able to take an additional step. Content is nice, but sales are needed. Like we mentioned above, the goal was not just to raise brand awareness, but also to collect quality leads.

Organic reach accomplishes more than expensive ads

We’re always telling our clients to budget for advertising their content, otherwise it won’t get the attention it deserves and that’s a waste. But… in a B2B-market where sales are made by decision makers who shake hands with account managers, organic reach can sometimes make the difference. Advertising well on LinkedIn is expensive. Especially when there are several interesting parties in different countries, all in a different operating field and with different names for the ‘decision maker’ title. That’s why we now also create content for Philips that offers tools for the Sales Managers.

Great organic reach creeps into LinkedIn’s roots, and no advertising budget can beat that. Or did you mean to tell me that you knew what Hotellkjede Innkjøpssjef meant without googling? In Philips’ new strategy there’s a question that always gets asked during the development of new content, and that’s “will the sales managers get a new tool to work with?” That could mean a LinkedIn post that sales managers will be able to share or a personal video for every sales manager that they can use on social media, but in personal e-mails or newsletters, too. Ultimately the sales managers are the ones who initiate and close the deals, and social media in 2020 is much more than just a platform with a company page. By understanding the sales funnel, the social media possibilities become clear and infinite.

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Alpro: Social Content strategy